Saturday, June 08, 2013

Crane Animal Frolic Chi Kung, Exercise #4

4.  The Sandhill Crane Glides Down to Land Along the Platte River    

Step forward with the right leg.  Place the weight evenly into the right foot.  Gradually lift the arms to the side and slightly backward, palms facing down.  Gradually lift the left leg into the air, and point the left toe.  Balance on the right foot.  Lift the head slightly and look forward.  Inhale as you lift the left leg and lift both arms up.  Hold in the upward position for a few moments.  Then, exhale as you draw the left leg back down to the floor, and draw both arms down to the sides of the thighs.  As you exhale, imagine yourself as a Crane gliding downward, lowering and angling your wings to slow your descent, getting your feet ready to land on the muddy ground by the riverbank of the Platte River.   

With our breathing in we lift to flight.  With our breathing out we prepare to land on the riverbank.   
Repeat the same movement to the opposite side: left leg on ground, right leg lifted, arms out to the side and back.  Alternate back and forth from side to side. 
I prefer moving forward as I shift from side to side.  However, if room does not permit, then step back with both feet into the Crane Stance before stepping out to the opposite side.  

Hatha yoga practitioners know a variation of this movement as "Warrior Three" (Virabhadrasana III) or "Balancing Stick."  In the yoga version, both arms are extended forward as far as possible with the palms touching.  The extended position, balancing on one leg, is held for 20 to 30 seconds (B.K. S. Iyengar, Light on Yoga, 1966, p.74).  The Crane Frolic method is more like a Vinyasa or Flowing style of yoga, coordinated more with breathing pace without extended holding in a static isometric posture for longer periods of time.   
Over 500,000 Sandhill Cranes migrate to the Platte River in Nebraska from Canada each year.  
We do see many gaggles of Canadian Geese in the winter months that migrate from as far as Alaska to the warmer climate and muddy rice fields of the North Sacramento Valley in California.  However, I've never seen any cranes migrate to our area.  

Animal Frolics Chi Kung

Crane Animal Frolics Chi Kung

Valley Spirit Qigong 

Mike Garofalo's Qigong and Yoga Classes in Red Bluff


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